After a reevaluation process that began Saturday morning, most of Canby and Oregon City city limits were rolled back to level 1 evacuation status late that evening.
While still not fully out of the woods, with the Riverside Fire still rampaging, uncontained, in the southeast part of the county, the good news was heralded by many as a positive step in the right direction — finally — after our nearly week-long nightmare.
Parts of Sandy were also dropped from level 2 (“Get Set”) to level 1 (“Be Ready”). There were no reductions in the level 3 (“Go Now”) areas, including Molalla, Estacada, Colton and much of the surrounding countryside.
The decision came down from the Riverside Fire Incident Management Team — based on current fire activity and firefighter progress in securing hotspots near these communities.
There are still four fires burning in Clackamas County, Clackamas Fire reports. The Riverside Fire is currently being managed by the Southwest Federal Incident Management Team No. 1 and has burned more than 130,000 acres.
The three additional fires, managed by the Oregon State Fire Marshal’s Office and the Oregon Department of Forestry, are identified as the Dowty Road, Unger Road and Wilhoit Fires — all in the Molalla and Colton areas. These three fires have collectively burned an estimated 5,000 acres.
Fire crews are actively protecting structures and patrolling the area, putting out hotspots.
“Our challenges remain reduced visibility, limiting our aerial reconnaissance and rapidly changing fire conditions,” Clackamas Fire said in a press release Saturday afternoon. “We hope for a break in the weather and better visibility later today.”
Two of the largest fires threatening Oregon’s population centers in Clackamas and Marion Counties remained completely uncontained Sunday, but more favorable weather and an easing of some evacuation warnings in areas of Oregon City, Canby and Sandy indicate an improving situation.
Across the state so far, authorities have confirmed that 10 people have died, at least a dozen are unaccounted for and hundreds are reeling from lost homes due to the record-breaking wildfires that continue to burn.
The blazes have scorched more than 1 million acres across Oregon, spanning from the southern border to the coast and Clackamas County. That figure is about twice the yearly average over the past 10 years.
Official updates on the Riverside Fire are available at
inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/7174/ or call the hotline at 541-638-0668.
The live map to check the latest evacuation status is available here: https://ccgis-mapservice.maps.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=fe0525732f1a4f679b75a5ccf1c84b30